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Brown Velvet Cake

Okay, my first attempt at red velvet cake without using food coloring failed.  It ended up just looking like a light chocolate cake.  It tasted pretty good though.  More varied flavors than a regular chocolate cake since I tried to use some berries to bring out more red.  I forgot... berries tend to turn brown when you cook them.

Stacey's Brown Velvet Cake Ingredients:

The Light Chocolate Cake
2 1/3c unbleached white flour, organic
1/4c cornstarch
1.5c sugar, organic
1 tsp salt
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/4c Scharffen Berger cocoa powder

1/2c canola oil, organic
2 eggs, organic
1 1/2c buttermilk, heated with cooked beets
1c pureed strawberries and raspberries (frozen, thawed)
1 tsp white vinegar

2 - 9" round cake pans, lined with parchment paper

The Maple Cream Cheese Frosting
2 packages cream cheese, organic
2 sticks butter, salted, organic
1 tbs vanilla bean paste
1/3c maple syrup
4c confectioners sugar

First, the cake.  I preheated the oven to 350F.  Then, took two beets, chopped them into little cubes and tried to heat them in the buttermilk.  The buttermilk started to separate a bit, so I decided to pull the beets out and cook them separately, hoping that their color would leech better once they were cooked.  Once I cooked the beets in a pot for a bit, I put them back into the buttermilk, which turned a nice magenta.  Still didn't end up being red enough, but I didn't know that.  I strained out the beet pieces.

Then I used my immersion blender to puree the thawed strawberries and raspberries.

I put all the dry ingredients into a bowl and mixed with a rubber spatula.  I whisked the eggs into the oil a bit with a fork, and then I added all the wet ingredients into the dry and was careful to mix until just combined.  Never want to overmix cake.  I poured even amounts into the round cake pans.  I baked them for about 20-25 minutes, I think.  My notes say 20 minutes, but that doesn't quite seem like enough.  This is what I get for waiting so long to post...

The batter looked sort of red, but the cake came out looking like this:


I let the cakes cool, and then made the frosting. I warmed the butter and cream cheese slightly, just enough so that it could be blended in my standing mixer and not get all stuck on the whisk attachment.  I added the maple syrup and vanilla and then I added confectioners sugar until it was the right taste and consistency.  I added about a cup at a time, and 4 cups seemed to do it.


It was for a southern food themed party so I brought my frosting and my cake layers and assembled it there.


We cut into it and it ended up looking like this:

My poor brown velvet cake.  It tasted good, but it's definitely not a red velvet cake.  Back to the drawing board...

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0.5 oz cornstarch
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1/2 tsp salt
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